Happy Birthday, Alison

​The flash of cameras and the lights along the edges of the runway blinded Alison to the cheering attendees. Hand on her hips, she turned this way and that to show off the skimpy lace teddy she modeled. Then she was on her way backstage. 
Backstage, she sat down at her vanity and noticed something that wasn’t there before: an origami crane atop an old leather photo album. Frowning, she set aside the crane. The world beyond disappeared into hyperfocus; all that mattered were these two objects. On the first page of the album, it read: “Happy birthday, Alison.”


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